Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Think Pink

Just like we need to nip these tantrums in the bud...

We need to nip breast cancer in the bud!!!

October is breast cancer awareness month. Cancer is dear to my heart obviously since I am a radiation therapist and treat cancer patients. Breast cancer is very treatable if caught early.

The American Cancer Society recommends the following early detection program:
o Annual mammograms beginning at age 40.
o Annual clinical breast exams (CBEs) for women 40 and over, or every three years for
women in their 20s and 30s.
o Optional monthly breast self-exams (BSEs) for women starting in their 20s.

Several factors increase the chances of developing breast cancer:
o Gender. Being a woman is the greatest risk factor for breast cancer.
o Age. The risk of developing breast cancer increases with age. The 2005-2006 Breast
Cancer Facts & Figures reports that 95 percent of new cases and 97 percent of cancer
deaths occurred in women aged 40 and over.
o Family history. Women with a family history of breast cancer especially a first-degree
relative (mother, sister, or daughter) have an increased risk of developing breast cancer.
The risk is higher if more than one first-degree relative has developed breast cancer.
o Never giving birth or giving birth after age 30.
o Recent use of combined hormone replacement therapy (HRT), which combines estrogen
and progestin. Higher risk is associated with longer use.
o Having a long menstrual history (periods starting before age 12 and ending after age 55).
o Use of alcohol, especially two or more drinks daily.
o Obesity, especially excessive weight gain after menopause.
o Physical inactivity.

Every woman is at risk for breast cancer and her risk increases with age. The best protection
is to detect it as early as possible and treat it promptly.

No comments: